Dec 4 Frank Russell
patty m

Today the sparrow chirps inside my head.  Tiny wings flitter nervously from the hedge darting out for bread newly spread upon the lawn.

I  throw it everyday but still they're nervous and I can't blame them as my own heart beats rapidly in sorrow.

a friendship broken
and still my heart cries in pain
fluttering wingless

Could it be these tiny birds are totem of the sad and butterflies the totem of new life and hope?  

sage little sparrows
tiny heads peeking through hedge
watching for the hawk

The rabbits are nibbling late summer grass.  Their tiny noses and ears twitch.  Some will fall while others flourish, the world isn't always kind . Gentle furry friend your baby is bigger now and no longer stays close to the hedge but cavorts upon the lawn as all children do; Still she's not quite as knowledgeable as you my friend with fur so soft and gentle eyes.  Yet you will both survive this city living, hopping through the spray of sprinklers on lawns, digging holes ever watchful.  Perhaps we all learn to adapt even soft furry creatures.

Today a bunny
burrows protecting new life
small carrots my gift

Last night the leopard roamed through my dreams.  I felt the thrill of the hunt, teeth sinking into flesh and still I'm not not repelled. This is life and the leopard too must eat and yet she only kills to feed her hunger, she's not vindictive and for some reason she grounds me.  To survive one must be strong.  In light of moon she urges me on stilling frantic thoughts and giving me purpose.

essense of fleetness
necessity is living
surviving through pain

As a child I remember the zoo rides on the elephant. What a gorgeous creature she was. A special saddle was set atop her back and little children were placed in a row to ride upon her back.  I loved to feel her rough hide, and the touch of her inquisitive trunk. Yet even as I felt dwarfed in her presence I saw something so powerfully wondrous in her eyes, a strength of character and wisdom as if life had taught her so much and she wanted someone to understand.  
When I rode atop her I felt light as if I had wings, there was no mistrust or any frightening vibes, just a glorious feeling akin to euphoria.  Once she was sad and I saw tears in her eyes.  I didn't ride her that day just being near her was enough.

mountain of wisdom
the earth quakes beneath your feet
and yet you shed tears

  Dec 4 Frank Russell

i'm not sure
at what age
others come to terms,
like me at almost 52,
with our mortality,
the contract hits
we're born as.
i guess this to be
a great cosmic joke
i stopped laughing about
a few years ago, when poetry
gathered in my throat
and the pen that appeared
in the palm of my hand
kept me from grabbing
a rope. i wrote.
i write.

dried blood
from my stubbed toe
in the night
i found on the floor
one morning.
how easily it flaked
and was gone
when scrubbed. how easily
we are gone
from the light of the sun
and absorbed
into the earth as dirt.

i think we are
our most special
as a collective soul.
in the throes
of death
we are solo,
but going forward
we aren't alone.

  Nov 1 Frank Russell
patty m

Scorching summer 
all the days past
fluttering off the calendar
as the glory of autumn reappears.
Sweet scent of coriander
green incense sticks offered to household Gods.
Forest and earth twice blessed
as rain falls 
                        I listen 
carried on waves
of your breath,
shadow stroking
the trusting kiss
the face behind the face
relaxed in sleep
I am your roots
your bone your gristle,
earth's curve our circle.
stretched into time

Frank Russell Jun 19

This has nothing to do with the Absolute -
     this idea of God.

In childhood, God was the loving
     Father in the sky -
Outsized, sporting a flowing white beard, and
     ever attentive to my prayers.

Now, God is an abstract notion -
     transcendent and immanent,
Infinite, eternal, and
     difficult to embrace.

But all of this has nothing to do
     with God -
All these continually mutating
     mental constructs.

- fr

Frank Russell May 22

This is not the mentality
     by which we were schooled -
This sense of nothing
     solid about ourselves -
Nothing permanent, nothing stable
     to lovingly cleave to -
That "I" is only a
     transient idea of "I"

- fr

Intense loneliness
personifies itself
before inanimate walls

With a variety of
empathetic characters
to populate the room

Weaving and performing
an anxious dance
of justifications

For never permitting
to be exposed.

- fr

Frank Russell Mar 16

All matter is fluid
She believed
As she passed effortlessly
Through the concrete -
Then realizing the passage
Was in imagination only
She felt the warm blood pumping
From her skull onto a
Cold factual sidewalk.

- fr

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